Motorcycle Insurance Dallas, Texas

Motorcycle Insurance Frequently Asked Questions

Motorcycle Insurance Dallas, TexasSpring is here, which means motorcycle season has arrived. Whether you enjoy going on long road trips or simply just like taking your motorcycle for a ride around your town, it’s important you have the right insurance coverage in the event you have to file a claim.

What You Should Know About Your Insurance & How Your Rate Can Be Calculated

Where You Live Matters

If you can ride your motorcycle year round, there is a chance you may pay more than an individual who can only ride during warmer months. Why? With your shortened window for riding, individuals who have a “motorcycle season” lower their risk for an accident.

Your Experience & Age Matter

This shouldn’t be too shocking to read. If you are an experienced motorcycle rider, you may have a lower rate vs. someone who just bought their first motorcycle. Your age factors in with your experience. Like car insurance, young drivers usually pay higher rates. However, if you are 50 years old and have no experience, you may pay more for insurance compared to a 30 year old who has 10 years of experience.

Your Riding History Matters

Just like car insurance, your riding history matters. Accidents, claims and tickets all play a role in your motorcycle insurance rate.

What Type of Bike You Own Matters

High performance bikes may be more to insure. If your bike has a big engine, that too can cost more to insure.

What Type of Motorcycle Insurance Coverage Should I Have?

Talk to one of our licensed agents about this. We can explain all coverage options. Some of these coverages are mandatory, but others are optional.  Here are a few to consider below.

Comprehensive insurance – covers you in the event your bike is damaged due to vandalism, falling trees/debris, storms, hitting an animal, theft, windshield damage, etc.

Liability – this covers you if you are responsible for causing damage or injuring someone else.

Collision – covers your motorcycle if you collide with a vehicle or object regardless if you are at fault or not.

Uninsured/underinsured motorist property damage – if your bike is damaged by someone who isn’t carrying insurance or is underinsured. This coverage provides coverage up to your policy limits. Bonus – it can cover your injuries too.

Have custom parts for your bike? Get it covered. Some carriers automatically include some coverage in a policy, but not all.  Talk to your agent about this.

How Can I Save Money On My Motorcycle Insurance Coverage?

  • Establish good credit
  • Bundle your insurance policy with other policies such as your car or home insurance
  • If you’re a member of the Harley-Davidson Owners Group (applies in 42 states)
  • Some insurance carriers give a discount for having a motorcycle endorsement
  • Take a motorcycle safety course (this is great for all riders! Experienced or beginner)

Almost every state in the United States requires some form of motorcycle insurance. Contact our office for a motorcycle insurance quote! We will help you determine what coverage options fit your lifestyle the best.

Contractor Insurance Agent Dallas, TX

Five Things You Should Do Before Hiring a Contractor

Contractor Insurance Agent Dallas, TXIf you’re an experienced home remodeler, you’ve probably come across contractors who are willing to offer better pricing for cash deals or who are reluctant to provide you with a service contract. Did you know that you can be held liable for hiring a contractor who does not carry the right insurance and causes damages or injuries to another person or even one of their own workers? Saving a few dollars on your remodel can end up costing you thousands so follow these tips to avoid an insurance disaster.

  1. Look for obvious red flags: Getting multiple quotes for the job is a great idea, but did you find a contractor who will do the work for ½ as much as the next guy? How is this possible? When you’re inviting a contractor to your home, be sure to ask them for credentials before they come over to give you a bid. Following these steps can save you from theft, liability and even money.
  2. Ask for references: If you found a great contractor and you like him/her, ask them if they have a website or if there is someone who has had work done by them recently that you can talk to. If a contractor is proud of the work they do, they should have several references for you to call. It is okay to ask for reference and most people expect it. Most small businesses survive off of word-of-mouth advertising, so don’t be shy.
  3. Utilize the internet to look up their license: Contractors are required to have a license to perform work. You can utilize your states resources to find these contractors. An internet search will provide you with some quick references. You can even make your job quicker by asking them to provide you with a copy of their license or number.
  4. Active License, Insurance & Bond: Ask the contractor for a copy of their license as well as documentation of their insurance and bond. Note: Check the dates on the license as well as the insurance to ensure they’re currently in force or active.
  5. Get specific: Not only is it important to protect your insurance from a scam, but ensure your pocketbook doesn’t get taken for a ride too. Ask questions like, “Is this an estimate or a final bid?” “Does this estimate include parts and labor?” “Can I see where you’re buying the products beforehand?” The more questions you ask, the better you will feel and the more the contractor will understand that you’re educated on this process.

Let’s take a closer look at what some of these products do:

  1. License: A license to do business means that contractor has met local guidelines and qualification standards to work in their field. Hiring an unlicensed contractor can result in shoddy work or dangerous results such as with an electrician.
  2. Insurance: Contractors need two types of insurance really.
    1. General Liability Insurance: This will protect you from damages that the contractor causes such as a ladder falling through a window, causing a fire or overspray onto a neighboring house during some painting.
    2. Workers Compensation Insurance: This insurance will protect the contractor if one of his employees is injured on the job while on your property. If the contractor does not carry workers compensation insurance, your homeowners insurance policy might be asked to pay that workers claim.
  3. Bonds: A bond acts as a guarantee that the contractor will perform the work they’ve been asked to do. For instance, say your pay a contractor to do a job and he never gets the permits or doesn’t pay a subcontractor – collecting from his bond can help cover these costs.

Hiring a contractor this way can be a great option to bringing some new changes to your home. It is possible to really save money on these services, but just using some simple, quick research and asking the right questions can save you a bundle as well as a headache.

Insurance Agent Dallas, TX

Life Situations When You Should Do an Insurance Review With Your Agent

Insurance Agent Dallas, TXWorking with a local, independent insurance agency has many perks versus trying to figure out your insurance policy by yourself & purchasing it online. Not only do independent insurance agencies represent the top insurance carriers, but we can also act as your adviser. So, when should you take advantage of our expertise and do an insurance policy review?

Annual Review

Whether it’s your auto or home insurance policy, your insurance policies get renewed on the same month every year. This is probably the best time to reach out to your insurance agent regarding an insurance review. Did you premium go up? If so, reach out to us. We can re-quote you, often quoting several carriers at once. Then, we can shop to find you the best rate at similar coverage. Rates have been trending up, so it is possible your current carrier is still the best one.

At the Start of a New Season

This works best for all those individuals who own a boat, RV, ATV, motorcycle, etc. In many cases, individuals use their toys during the season and not year round. If this is the case for you, it might be best to ask your agent for an insurance review before you bring your boat, RV or ATV out to use for the season. A quick email or phone call is all it takes.

If You Have Multiple Insurance Policies

Did you know you can earn a nice discount by bundling your policies together? If you are a new college grad, you may be looking for renters insurance. Ask us if you can save money by bundling your renters and auto insurance together. Or, if you are looking to purchase an umbrella insurance policy to protect your assets, we may be able to score you a discount by bundling it with your auto or home insurance.

Updating Your Home

If you recently completed some major remodeling to your home, reach out to your insurance agent. We will want to ensure you have enough insurance coverage for all the changes you made such as custom cabinetry or new hardwood floors.

Life Changes

Whether you are working from home now and are driving less, recently got married or now have a teen driver in the house, we appreciate when you reach out to us! Not only can we look for discounts, but we can update your insurance policy to avoid any gaps in coverage.

We hope these examples encourage you to ask for an insurance review. As you insurance agent, we want to make sure you understand your current coverage and are getting the best coverage for your unique situation. We are here to help! Ask for insurance review today.

How to create a productive work enviornment at home in Dallas

How to Have a Productive Work Environment at Home

How to create a productive work enviornment at home in Dallas2020 has been the year where many more individuals experience working from home instead of driving into work. For some, this may feel luxurious, while other individuals may feel lost and unsure how they can be productive at home. We are looking to help the latter group! Working from home can be effective and relaxing when done correctly. Follow these simple tips to be successful.

Have a Dedicated Work Space

This is crucial. Just like you have a dedicated work space in your office, you want the same thing when working from home. Some individuals may have the luxury of having a separate bedroom or other unused space they can transform. Others may not. If you do not have an extra room, we suggest setting up your space in a clean, organized matter. Use one seat at your kitchen table that can mimic a cubicle. Keep your space organized and make it appear to be your dedicated work space. Or, rearrange your living room to have a small work space.

Create a Routine

Some individuals may find it is best to follow their exact routine as if they were going into the office to work. Set an alarm, shower, eat breakfast, start working by 8 am. You can mimic your exact work schedule or you can create a new routine. Regardless, you should have a routine! If you are looking for a new routine, consider constructing a to-do list at the beginning of each day. Do you have any conference calls? What needs to get completed today and by what time? When you know this information, you can lay out your day in an organized manner. Be sure to include a work break as suggested next. Working from home has perks, but if you’re constantly doing other things because you can, this will hurt your work productivity.

Take a Break

Just like you would take a lunch break while working in the office, take a break when you are at home. We would not recommend tackling your household to-do list during this time, but perhaps taking a break to do a 20 minute walk, sit down and have a meal or anything else that gives you a break from your work duties.

Want to Start Working From Home Full Time?

If you run your own business, consider creating a dedicated work space in your home. Whether it is converting a room into an office or building a detached office outside your home. It should feel like work and is only used for work. Best of all, you may be able to deduct the dedicated space from your taxes. Talk to you accountant about this. If you find you will be working from home permanently and are a small business owner, contact us regarding your insurance policy.

We hope these tips are helpful. If you have any questions regarding your insurance policy, reach out to our agency. We can provide a free quote or complete an insurance review.

Ideas to spring clean your car or home in Dallas, TX

5 Ideas to Spring Clean Your Car or Home

Ideas to spring clean your car or home in Dallas, TXHaving a clean home or a clean car is a great feeling. While it can be a pain to get started mentally, it’s always worth it once it’s complete. Here is a quick checklist to help you when it comes to spring cleaning your vehicle and your home. Consider committing a few hours to your car and your home over a weekend. With a solid to-do list, you may find it takes less time than you think.

Five Things to Do For Your Car –

  • Check the conditions on your tires. Any visible sidewall damage or bulging?
  • Wipe down all windows on the inside. While you’re at it, wipe down your dash with a vinyl cleaner. Not only will it be nice to wipe away any dust or grime, but it can help protect against the sun’s UV rays.
  • Check for the last maintenance visit. How long has it been since your last oil change?
  • Check your wiper blades. Are they cracked or do they leave streaks?
  • Give your car a wash, possible wax and vacuum the interior! If you have the supplies at home, great! If not, drive down to your local car wash to tidy up the interior and exterior of your vehicle. Doing so will help maintain the value of your vehicle.

Five things to do for your home –

  • Dust

Make a checklist of all the areas in your house where dust can collect. We typically look to dust televisions, window sills, baseboards, blinds, picture frames, night stands, the top of cabinets or ceiling fans or bed frames.

  • Organize

Go through your cupboards and closets. Consider donating any clothing you haven’t worn in over a year. Organize your cupboards like your food pantry, junk drawers or storage closets.

  • Change smoke detector batteries

This chore takes less than 5 minutes to complete. If you have a carbon monoxide detector, check the batteries there too.

  • Disinfect

This may take a little more time. It’s always good to wipe out your refrigerator a few times a year. You can disinfect areas like your shower, tub, toilet or wash your shower curtains. Also, disinfect your TV remote, door knobs, computer mouse or drawer handles.

  • Donate

It feels good to get rid of things! Whether it’s going through your closet to donate clothing or going through your garage, getting rid of things can make your life feel organized.

We hope this short checklist to spring cleaning your home or car is helpful. If have questions about your car insurance or other vehicle insurance, contact us! We can also do a policy review for your home or condo insurance. Take advantage of working with a local independent insurance agency to ensure you have the right insurance coverage for your needs.

Best Insurance for Custom Parts, Equipment or Paint Dallas, TX

Do You Have Custom Paint, Parts or Equipment for your Vehicle?

Best Insurance for Custom Parts, Equipment or Paint Dallas, TXA lot of people take great pride in their vehicles and for them it isn’t only an asset, it is something that expresses their individuality. But, if you’re customizing a vehicle, whether it be a car, motorcycle or ATV, you want to make sure that your insurance policy covers the custom parts and equipment as well as the modifications and labor that might be going into it.

Lifted Vehicles

For those of us who have owned or currently own a lifted truck or SUV, they’re a lot of fun! Not only are they more capable off-road, but you get a higher vantage point for visibility and driving them can add to your enjoyment of owning the vehicle altogether. However, be sure to let your insurance agent know that you have a vehicle with modified suspension. In the event of a claim, custom suspension and wheels and tires can be considered custom parts and equipment. This means that unless you have an endorsement for larger, more expensive wheels and tires as well as the lift kit, you may be out the difference in price from stock if you find yourself in a claims situation. Typically this is called a Custom Parts & Equipment endorsement.

Custom Paint

A custom paint job can set your vehicle apart from the rest and express your individuality. If you have a car with a custom paint job on your car or motorcycle, you’ll want to be sure to get the Custom Parts & Equipment endorsement for this too. Custom paint is expensive and if you find yourself without the coverage, you’re not likely to be compensated fairly without it.

Custom parts and equipment (CPE)

The simple rule of thumb with CPE is that if it wasn’t that way from the factory it is considered custom. Custom parts and equipment can include the following items:

  • Stereo system
  • Navigation System
  • Custom Wheels & Tires
  • Lift Kits
  • Paint Jobs
  • Chrome Accessories
  • Custom seat, handlebars, grips, exhaust & more on motorcycles for example.

Custom parts and equipment is not a standard type of coverage. Some insurance companies offer basic CPE coverage for certain types of vehicles like motorcycles but as a rule of thumb and a precautionary, never assume that your custom parts are covered. Be sure to tell your licensed independent agent about the custom parts on your car, truck or specialized vehicle like your motorcycle to ensure you have the right amount of protection and can replace your vehicle in the event of a loss.

Flood Insurance Agent Dallas, TX

Everything You Need to Know About Flood Insurance

The Myth: Homeowners Insurance Covers My Home From All Damage

Flood Insurance Agent Dallas, TXFlood insurance is one of the more commonly misunderstood insurance coverages. Many homeowners assume that if they have a homeowner’s insurance policy, then they’re covered from all water damage that could occur to their home. This is not true. Flood insurance is not typically included in standard home insurance policies – it requires a separate policy altogether.

Where Can Flood Insurance Be Purchased From?

Most places you purchase home insurance from will also offer you an option for flood insurance. Flood insurance can be purchased easily from your local independent insurance agent – including us!

Is Flood Insurance Expensive?

Flood insurance prices will vary depending on many factors. Those factors can include:

  • Value of your home
  • Location of your home (is it likely to flood – near rivers, streams, swamps etc.)
  • Primary or secondary residences
  • Basements
  • & more.

If you want to get a general idea, we can quickly provide you with a quote or you can go to FEMAs website and look up your home address and assess your risk. The quickest way to understand your risk and get a quote would be to contact our agency.

Doesn’t FEMA Cover My Flood Loss?

In order for FEMA to step in and help, the President of the United States must declare a FEMA emergency. This is done in roughly 50 percent of major floods (according to FEMA.GOV). Even then, the assistance provided is a low interest loan that needs to be repaid. This is not free money given out.

A Pipe Broke In My House, Do I need Flood Insurance?

No. A broken pipe in your home is not what flood insurance is for. This would be covered by your standard home insurance policy.

My Sewer Backed Up Into My Home, Is This Flood Insurance?

No, unless the sewer backed up clearly because of a flood and rising flood waters. There is a coverage available called Water & Sewer Backup coverage. You may ask your agent about this and what it covers.

How Fire & Water Can Create Floods

Do you live in or have property located in an area that recently had wildfires? Trees suck up so much water when they are alive. If these trees die off, this creates excess runoff in areas not typically prone to flooding. This can increase your chances of being involved in a flood.

Only you can decide whether having flood insurance is right for you. While it is mostly optional (unless you live in a high flood prone area and your mortgage carrier requires it), it may help save you thousands of dollars in expenses.

Call us today to run a no obligation quote for you. We can quickly produce numbers for you so you can decide whether or not flood insurance is the right choice for you.

Auto Insurance Agent Dallas, TX

Auto Insurance Facts Vs. Myths

Auto Insurance Agent Dallas, TXWhen it comes to purchasing auto insurance there are many myths that exist. Let’s take a closer look at some of these myths and help you understand why they may not be true.

Auto Insurance Is More Expensive For Men

If you have two individuals of the same age who live in the same town, one male and the other female, it is not true that the male will pay more for his insurance. In fact, there are many variables that come into play when an insurance company determines premium. Some of those are:

  1. Garaging Zip Code
  2. Driving history
  3. Credit report
  4. Loss history
  5. Education level
  6. Type of vehicle
  7. And many more!

To find out what your premium might be, the only way is to get a quote. Compare companies and coverage options that you need by talking to an independent agent. We can compare many companies side by side.

Older Cars Cost Less To Insure

Not true. For instance, your personal injury protection will likely be less on a newer vehicle because it is equipped with more safety features to aid you in the event of an accident – meaning you’re more likely to be injured in an older vehicle without airbags for example. However, insurance costs for comprehensive and collision coverage do tend to go down the older a vehicle gets because it is simply worth less money.

If someone borrows your car, they are responsible for the insurance.

In most states, insurance follows the vehicle. It is called “permissive use.” If you give someone permission to drive your vehicle, you’re also essentially giving them permission to use your insurance. Now, be careful here because if someone is in your household and not listed on your insurance policy and has regular access and use to your vehicle, you may find yourself in a tricky claims situation because that person should be listed on your insurance policy.

I have an auto insurance policy so it will cover me when I’m delivering food or working for a rideshare company.

If your job requires you to deliver food using your own vehicle or you work part time as an Uber or Lyft driver, you need a special insurance policy. Typically an endorsement to your regular auto insurance, this provides coverage for you while you’re using your vehicle for work related purposes.

Your friend pays less for their insurance than you do so that means you’re paying too much.

Insurance is specific to the driver, their history, vehicle, garaging zip code, usage and so many other factors. There are hundreds of different scenarios that can be calculated to determine your auto insurance premiums. Just because your friend pays less for a similar car, does not mean you’re overpaying.

If you ever want to know if you’re paying too much or want to know all your options for auto insurance, call us! As an independent insurance agency, we have many choices for insurance. Oftentimes we can share with you the insurance premiums of up to 10 different insurance companies in the same time it takes to do a single quote. Trust us to find you the best rates and service for your specific situation. We can also help you dispel other myths that exist with insurance premiums.

Auto Insurance in Dallas, Texas

5 Ways to Increase the Longevity of Your Car

Auto Insurance in Dallas, Texas

AUTO INSURANCE

Purchasing a car is a big investment. Some people keep cars for 10+ years, while others trade them in only after a few years of driving. Either way, taking pride in your vehicle and keeping it properly maintained is crucial for increasing the longevity of your car. Here are five key tips to keeping it maintained properly.

Wash Your Car Often

Some people are great at keeping their car clean, while others may let it go until someone writes “Wash Me!” on the window. Keeping your car clean is crucial for resale/trade in value because contaminants like dust, pollen, tree sap, bugs, bird droppings, salt and more damage your paint and finish.

Heat, rain and air pollution can also affect the longevity of your paint and finish.

When should you wash your car immediately? If newly splattered bugs, bird droppings, and tree sap appear on your car. If you have a long commute to work each week, consider washing it weekly since dirt, pollen, gravel or air pollutants can have an impact on your car’s paint.

When to wash your car 1-2x a month

If you have mild weather, if you don’t drive your car much where it wouldn’t be exposed to tree sap, bugs, and bird droppings or if your car stays in a closed garage most of the time.

Fill The Gas Tank Before It Gets Too Low

Gasoline can act as a coolant for your electric fuel-pump motor. When your gasoline level is very low, the pump sucks in air, which can create heat and cause the fuel pump to work harder. There is a chance the fuel-pump motor could wear prematurely or fail if you always drive your car when it’s near empty.

Don’t rely on your car telling you how many miles are empty. When your tank is ¼ full, fill it up.

Check The Air Filter

Look to replace your air filter once a year or every 20,000 miles. It’s fairly inexpensive and can actually benefit you by increasing your fuel efficiency, reduce emissions and prolong your engine life.

Check the Fluids

Fluids play an important role in your engine and car health. While most of us leave it to the professionals to check the different fluid levels, there are some you can do yourself on a monthly basis.

Check your windshield wiper fluid. Your windshield wiper fluid reservoir is typically a large, white plastic container with a windshield wiper image on it. You can always check your owner’s manual to make sure it’s correct. If the fluid level is less than the line shown or less than three quarters full, fill it up.

Check your oil. Once you’ve found your dipstick, pull it all the way out and wipe the end. Then, reinsert the dipstick. When you pull it out again, see where the oil level lines up on the line. It should be near the full line. If it’s not, add more oil.

Replace the Fuel Filter

Your fuel filter catches particles, debris and impurities in your gas tank before the fuel reaches the pump. This makes sure only clean gasoline reaches your engine. You want to avoid any debris clog up over time. Replacing your fuel filter may be different depending on the on the car and what the manufacturer recommends.  Check your owner’s manual to find out the timeline for your vehicle and leave this one to an expert unless you’re especially handy.

While we can’t help you maintain your vehicle, we can find you great rates on your home and auto insurance.

Personal Umbrella Policy Dallas, TX

How Can I Protect My Assets?

Personal Umbrella Policy Dallas, TXYou’ve worked hard for your assets. Whether it’s purchasing your home, an investment property or vehicle or saving for retirement, it has taken years and years of consistent hard work to build what you have. Did you also know that your future income can be considered an asset too? So, how can you protect your assets?

By purchasing an umbrella insurance policy.

But, I have insurance for my home and vehicles? Yes, we need insurance for our car and home. But, there are limits on how much you are protected. For example, you get into a car accident where you are at fault. Your insurance policy covers you for $250,000 in 3rd party damages. However, the other individuals in the car accident needed medical attention & their car was totaled. The total damages for the other party cost $350,000.

You are responsible for the remaining $100,000. If you have an umbrella insurance policy, it would then kick in to cover this excess liability. If you don’t have an umbrella policy, would you be able to foot the bill? If you cannot pay for the remaining balance, a court may issue your future wages to be garnished or they may target your other assets.

Would you prefer to rest easy knowing you have an extra layer of insurance coverage to protect your assets?

There are countless ways to exceed the limits of your home or auto insurance policy. Get peace of mind with an umbrella insurance policy. It eliminates the gaps and insufficient limits on your insurance policies. You’ll be amazed at how affordable coverage can be.

Four levels of protection:

By purchasing an umbrella policy, you increase the limits of liability on:

  • Bodily injury: Medical bills and settlement for injuries sustained to the third party.
  • Property damage: Damages sustained to the property of a third-party.
  • Other damage: Libel & slander, other claims expenses.
  • Legal fees: Hiring an attorney can be expensive. An umbrella insurance policy helps cover the cost.

If you have questions about purchasing a personal umbrella insurance policy, contact our agency! Our licensed agents can go over coverage options or simply provide a free quote.